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December 19, 2020 2:00 am
What happens when a believer dies? What will heaven be like? What about infants and children who die? When do our bodies get resurrected? What will they be like? These questions and more occupy our thoughts from time to time. In this series, From the Edge of Eternity, we will follow a believer from death into the different stages of eternity: the Intermediate State, the resurrection of the body, the Kingdom Age and the Eternal State. Since forever is a long time, it only makes sense that we both understand and prepare for this "ultimate journey."
This teaching is from the series From the Edge of Eternity.Links:
This week's DevoMail: https://connnectwithskip.com/devomail
Here's the truth that is uniquely about the human being. No other creature on earth know no other species has this characteristic.
God is put eternity in their hearts. You have maybe a dog home or catacomb or fish are heading one out a note but your pets ever come to you and ask you the meaning of life and pondering over what happens to me after I die and I have a dog you give him a meal and you walk in once a day life.
Good didn't really care about much beyond that which humans have this unique dissatisfaction. This search is gotta be something beyond that will rest did you look at the funeral industry makes about $20.7 billion annually. That's the cost of an estimated 2.4 million funeral. The main cost of the funerals for the casket grave in the tombstone cost is so high that more people will ever opting for the less expensive option of cremation. So while this talk about death, we all know that it's a documented fact picture of the Lord Terry. Every person will die, but was less clear is what exactly happens once we do, that's what we'll talk about today here and connect with Skip weekend division as we join Skip Heitzig for new weekend teaching series called from the edge of eternity. Before we do, let's find out what's happening in the connect with Skip resource Center this December. Recent research has found that Google searches for the word prayer surged worldwide alongside the spread of the novel coronavirus Google trends data shows that the search intensity for prayer doubles for every 8000 2/19 cases, but is there a right way or a more effective way to frame just best-selling author King Arthur, where the battles raging were to be on the frontlines on the front lines on her knees on the frontline standing in the full armor of God, casebook, Lord, teach me to pray in 28 days offers simple but powerful instruction on how and what to pray and what to expect when you do, and it's our way to say when you give a gift of $25 or more today to help keep this ministry on the air. Give online securely connectwithskip.com/offer call 800-922-1880 focus on Ecclesiastes chapter 3 to join her there as we begin from the edge of eternity. This week I was reading one guy's description of how big the universe wasn't something caught my attention.
He said if it cost you one sent just one penny to travel 1000 miles you could take a trip around the world for $0.25 and you could go to the moon for $2.38 you could travel to the sun for $930 but if you wanted to make a trip based on that same financial ratio to the nearest neighboring star. It would cost you $260 million.
He was trying to show how vast was our galaxy in our universe course would matter if you traveled around the world are went to the moon. Either of those journeys you would certainly need to make preparations for them in advance. Some of us traveled to Israel for a couple of weeks and to do that you may preparations is interesting about 233 and four weeks out at every service.
Those were going Israel would ask some predictable questions. What should we pack what will the weather be like, what about electrical outlets. Can we wash our clothes while were there. Is this the right camera for schedules were cleared. Money was saved. Some people people even read in advance. The sites that they were going to see all of that for just a two week trip. Here's my point.
We make those preparations for a two week trip overseas. Some people don't even make the same kind of consideration for the ultimate journey that is the eternal journey was JB Phillips is a great was a great Bible translator and scholar who in his lifetime, conducted over 5000 funerals, and yet whenever he would do a funeral he would never speak about the dearly departed, he would speak about the one who has arrived, the one who has arrived. The question is where did they arrive. Where did they go. What is it like now for that person and for us.
The question is where will you arrive. I heard about two neighbors was a pastor and a salesman. They lived next door to each other and at the same time that the pastor died. The salesman went away for a trip to Florida while he was there he sent a quick postcard back to his wife, but the postcard was delivered to the wrong mailbox was delivered to the wife of the deceased pastor she open the mail. She was shocked to read the postcard arrived safely. The heat here is awful. Quite a shock.
So when you die. And while people are on the earth preparing your memorial service casket will be buried and what kind of a flower arrangement should be before your casket who will do the eulogy. What should be said, what songs will go on while they're doing that. What will you be doing. You will be very conscious. The Bible indicates that we be rejoicing, beholding God's throne with myriads of angels and countless humans who have passed before you into God's presence or will you be in misery and in torment separated from God forever were beginning a new series I'm calling it from the edge of eternity and what were going to be doing principally is following the Christian from death all the way to heaven through all of the stages of heaven, though, we will from time to time be discussing the other side of that the unbeliever principally we want to follow the Christian from the moment of death and what happens next. And then next and the next, for the resurrection of the body and the stages of heaven where the reasons that I decided to do this is I've done my share of funerals.
Also, over the years and I funerals I get to hear what people believe about death and about the future and about eternity and and you might be surprised to hear what some who call themselves believers even think about death. I've heard Christians say that when a Christian dies, he turns into an angel.
And so it funerals I've heard in on it funerals you can like stop and correct them. Well I guess God just needed another Angel. That's why he call this person to have or I've heard at a eulogy not too long ago. Somebody stand up and say right now. I know he's playing golf in that big stairway in the sky really died.
Another was a big stairway in the sky. What about all the people who don't like golf. We got up like be caddies for them or something or some people will say we know after you die, you gotta go to a place some other place for a while and work really hard and then if you work really hard for a long time and pay off your sins. Then you get to go to have ever heard that not true, but some will indicate that or there's a number of stories that well you know a person dies they go to heaven. There, the gotta stop at the gate and at the gate of heaven.
Who's there yet. Peter Peterson magnifier a whole bunch of questions off. You gotta get all his questions right like what's the square root of that number.
Then if you get them all right. You get to get into heaven or I've heard people say well you know having you sit on a cloud all day long and you play harp, man. I'm sorry but I like harps to play one for a million years. No thanks. So what would be like really the moment after death. Do people turn into angels. What happens to the body. Do we remain disembodied spirits, or do we enter into a period of soul sleep until the resurrection. When do we get our new bodies, what will those bodies look like, what about a baby who dies what happens to babies at death and does that baby remain a baby for all of eternity. What about those who die of old age, with a look the same if there 95 years old forever didn't sound appealing, what will heaven be like, what will we do in heaven. Are there stages of heaven and over the stages be like and what about the judgment is a one big judgment or do believers get a certain kind of judgment, and if so, when and what will that be like those are some of the things we want to explore in this series we might be prepared for the ultimate journey but today in Ecclesiastes chapter 3 it's a it's a book that we looked at this last Wednesday but strategically did not cover these verses on purpose because we wanted to go through them. Today I'm in a call these travel tips because of the message title this morning.
These are points that emerged out of the tax. These are three travel tips for the ultimate journey. First of all, we all face our mortality. Or we might better say were bound by mortality, but we are made for eternity and thus we all long for certainty.
All of those three emerge from our text. Let's take the first one.
The mortality part of it verse one of Ecclesiastes 3 begins to everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven time to be born in a time to die. A time to plant and a time to pluck what is planted the time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to break down the time to build up a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn.
Time to dance.
Time to cast away stones time to gather stones time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing a time to gain and a time to lose. Time to keep the time to throw away time to tear and a time to so time to keep silence in the time to speak. A time to love and a time to hate.
A time of war.
In a time of peace. What profit has the worker from that in which he labors just that quick reading of those verses reveal a repeated word in those verses. What is that word that's repeated in every verse, the word time it's appeared pierced 28 different times in those eight verses time it's because were creatures of time were bound by time since mankind is been on the earth. We've observed our world week. We've mapped out the rotation of the earth on its axis. We know that there are periods of the day that are light and some that are dark and we've divided it up into 24 segments called hours and 60 units in that hour of minutes and then second, 60 seconds and and that's time and we live regularly. By that time we write things in our appointment books, we set our alarm clocks week. Keep track of our watches all day long we are bound by time we are creatures of time.
U.S. News & World Report had a little article in it and it says in a lifetime. The average American will spend six months at stop lights eight months opening junk mail I knew it one year looking for misplaced objects. Two years unsuccessfully returning phone calls four years doing housework in five years waiting in line. In addition, if you live to be 70 years of age, you will spend a total of 20 years sleeping 20 years working seven years playing five years, getting dressed 2 1/2 years in bed beside sleeping five months tying your shoes get loafers and no flip-flops make it easy now. All of these activities just amplify this truth. We all have a terminal disease called mortality if the Lord Terry's were all going to face what Solomon says in verse two. There's a time to die. This is there's a time to be born in George Bernard Shaw was fond of saying the statistics of death are quite impressive.
Everyone out of one person dies were bound by time we face mortality. What's more, were not really satisfied with any of this stuff. These activities don't fulfill us here we are on earth. In time, facing mortality involved in all of these activities, they don't really satiate us. They don't really quench our thirst. We have a hunch this might not be all there is Randy Alcorn in his excellent book on heaven calls earth the in between world earth is the in between world. Here we are, says Alcorn in between heaven and hell in this place called earth. In this time and space continuum making choices as to where we will spend eternity while Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes and if you know the gist of the book you know that every activity that Solomon searched out and got involved with an experience left him tasteless at the end wasn't enough. It wasn't satisfying. He's on a quest. He's on a journey. Life is disappointing for him very, even despairing as he looks under the sun, and all is vanity a repeated theme throughout this book so that all of life's experiences. If you keep doing them. They don't satisfy Paul even mentioned in first Corinthians chapter 15. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most pitiable. It's interesting Mark Twain, the American author was having a conversation with a gentleman and the guy was telling Mark Twain about heaven and being cynical as Twain was 20 said, look, you keep your heaven.
I'd rather go to Bermuda.
Why would why would he say that maybe it's because of all the ways he's heard Christians talk about heaven. Maybe they haven't come up with any suitable answers as to really what eternity is going to be like may be a lot of Christians gave them the idea that heaven is one long church service where you sing one song after another song after another song I've got to tell you that doesn't sound all that exciting and and when we hear that that's what it's going to be like me think boring, but we don't want to voice that because to be in spiritual. If we do, but were thinking in the back of our heads could I bring a computer and do some else were like text message my friend from my iPhone some else besides that you take Kevin. I'd rather go to Bermuda but back here in time framed by all of these activities spoken by Solomon were not satisfied. It's not enough. Why is that for the next couple of verses tell us what though we are facing and bound by our own mortality. We haven't been made for that we were made for eternity. Verse 10 I have seen the God given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied.
He has made everything beautiful in its time notice and export also.
Or, besides this, besides these activities in time. Also, he has put eternity in their hearts stop right there for a moment pauses for a moment he has put eternity in their hearts.
Now here's the truth that is uniquely about the human being. No other creature on earth.
No, no other species has this characteristic. God is put eternity in their hearts. You have maybe a dog at home or a cat at home or a goldfish or a pet iguana. I don't know but dear pets ever come to you and ask you the meaning of life.
Nursing pondering over the corner like what happens to me after I die and I have a dog you give him a meal and you walk in once a day in life's good. He didn't really care about much beyond that. But humans have this unique dissatisfaction.
This search there's gotta be something beyond that were restless. There's a whole field of study that is come really out of this truth call fan otology whether you're a nursing student or go to modern college you'll find a course on fan otology. The study of death. What happens to the dying person and what they think will happen to them after death fan otology from the Greek word Thanatos, which means death.
And why is that why that interest because God put eternity in our been created to wonder about eternity to this other today's teaching was the first half of the ultimate journey.
It's easy to listen again and share it with the quick links you'll find that connect script.com you can also get a CD copy of today's study for the entire series from the edge of eternity. Just log on to connectwithskip.com or for assistance with your order.
Feel free to call us at 1-800-922-1888 were so glad to welcome Skip in linear indoor studio today to talk about this brand-new series and that that's what happening today. The ultimate journey and this is going to unlock what the Bible says about life and death while now find it really is the ultimate journey.
It is were all alive and we will all face death. It's appointed and every man once to die, and after this the judgment. That's at such a stark reality freedom get ready for that were in trouble and that it seems like some people have like a morbid curiosity.
Others are just afraid. I mean it's a really deep fear for them about what happens when they die and how could a study like this in an eternal perspective help them with everyday life while you're always taught when you're young.
All through life it, you should have a long-term not a short-term perspective.
When you make a choice. That choice will have ramifications for weeks, months and years to come. So when you're going to date someone or think about marriage, or think about what school you're going to go to what you can study to be in that group for a while and it just makes sense to live with an eternal perspective. I I've heard it put that we have one life, but we have.
We live three times.
One is in the womb.
That's preparation for this life. Second is this life from birth to death. That's usually where people stop all the planning it's all about comfort is all about. Now estate planning yeah and in and out yet. That is like the womb it's preparatory for a yet solar longer and in this case, eternal living that takes place after we die. So, just as the nine month gestation period readies us for this life. This life readies us for the next life and all of us will live somewhere. So if we keep that in mind we will live here differently. We will make different choices. We will hang out with different people. It just makes more sense that were dealing with God's eternal perspective in living now. That's how Jesus conducted his entire life is kind of a good evangelistic that are this idea of people saying so anything to do with your life thinking of going to college and then my mother name to get married and have a job and then land what and then I'll have kids okay and then let you nine grandkids and then light and then I'll die right and then what so really, there are those and then what's in life and we prepare so many things in this world that don't matter quite as much as eternity and there's nothing like getting the perspective for distance by reading the Bible you read the Scriptures I got gives a whole new set of binoculars you can see further. That's the point of it all is because we are eternal creatures.
We are made for eternity. The book of Ecclesiastes says that and we got is put eternity in our hearts and we can try to stuff that push it away and not deal with it, but all of us long for it and we can live in such a way that her life is fulfilling here and were ready for the future now. Ultimately, for planning for eternity. Our plans for this world will change radically what you may think the goals now could really really change based on where where you're headed on same into thanks N yeah if you enjoy Skip's teachings each day. I hope you take time to connect with him by liking him on Facebook or adding them to your twitter or Instagram, you'll enjoy regular updates and keep up with all his latest happenings.
All the info we should connect skip.com eternity is wrapped up in the minds of every human life as we conclude the message. The ultimate journey. Next time here and correctly Skip weekend division of presentation of connection so connecting you to God's ever-changing true and ever-changing time